The BizSpark company of the day is Leetchi.com, a young and innovative French Startup based in Paris. Leetchi.com was founded by Celine Lazorthes, right after her graduation from a French Business School. The mission of the company is to provide a free-and-easy application for users to organize and buy a cool birthday gift all together. A problem we all face at least once !
Celine is coached by serial entrepreneurs Tariq Krim (Netvibes' Founder) and Oleg Tscheltzoff (Fotolia, Amen's Founder) and we wish her the same success!
Like most of the successful startups in France, Leetchi.com is based on .net and SQL Server. They are currently looking for a .net developer based in Paris.
Interview with Céline Lazorthes, Co-founder of Leetchi.com
Who are you?
My name is Céline, I’m 26 years old, I’m leetchi.com’s co-founder & CEO.
How do you feel being the most promising “Company of the Day” per Microsoft?
I feel very proud to be the most promising company of the day per Microsoft, because it means that I am recognized by experts.
What did you do before creating your company?
Before creating Leetchi.com, I was completing my master degree in HEC Paris, in Digital Business Management.
How did you get the idea?What's the genesis?
I got the idea during my studies. Of course, being a student is great; but, on the other hand we are better known for being broke than for being wealthy. Also, we are well known for being party animals we love to celebrate each other birthdays; and of course we love fancy birthday gifts. To make those gifts, we all put our money together. But sadly each time it’s the same story—one person buys the gift and runs after the others to be paid back. Most of the time it's complicated and money issues can make things awkward between good friends!
This problem happens to everyone, that’s the reason why I decided to try to solve it !
What do you sell? What is your company’s mission?
The mission of my company is to provide a free-and-easy application for users to organize and buy a cool birthday gifts together.
What is your market?
Leetchi's primary market is students and young workers; its secondary market is anyyone who loves to receive a group birthday gift !
Any partners you want to quote?
I would like to quote one of my business partners, an innovative Frenchcompany, named Limonetik providing me with the money transfer technology part, using dot net.
Lucky as I am, I met the great entrepreneur Tariq Krim (Netvibes' Funder) a long time ago; further, months ago, a friend of mine introduced me to the serial entrepreneur Oleg Tscheltzoff (Fotolia, Amen's Founder). We all three are part of Leetchi.com's story !
We assume that French are not the only people who organize group birthday gifts! That's the reason why we want to build a European service.
How many employees do you have? How many developers?
Leetchi is currently has one developer, but we are looking for another!
Are you hiring? If yes, what? Where?
We are hiring a high-qualified .net developer, in Paris.
Which platform are you building on? Why?
We are using the following technologies to build leetchi.com : .NET 3.5, Asp.net MVC, MVC Contrib, Nhibernate, Fluent Nhibernate, Structure Map.
Do you have any Software IP? Is there something that you’re the only one to do on the market?
We are the only one to provide a “many-to-one” payment application.
Who’s your role model?
I’ve got many different role models, my co-workers are two of them! Generally I admire people who have succeeded on their own.
Looking for funding? If yes, how much?
Not at the moment !
What about the BizSpark Program? What do you think?
The BizSpark program is a great opportunity for people like me; sharing the same technology addiction! I've already joined. It has helped me with networking and technology challenges.
Any advice to young software entrepreneurs?
Go ahead, do not hesitate to fail; the ones who succeed are the ones who try!
Anything else you’d like to say?
I would to thank all the people who are supporting me each day of this great adventure !